Discover French, Spanish, and British colonies along the coast and find out how colonists explored, settled, and lived.
The Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon
The Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon in Charleston was completed in 1771 and has been called the “Independence Hall of South Carolina.” Explore the dungeon and find out who was jailed there during the Revolutionary War.
- Juan Pardo
Juan Pardo was a Spanish explorer who built missions and forts in the Southeast in 1566 and 1567.
- DeSoto’s Carolina Trails
Find out where Hernando de Soto explored in South Carolina and what he said about the Native Americans he met.
- South Carolina Explorers
This map shows the routes of 5 explorers that first came to South Carolina.
- Francisco Gordillo and Pedro de Quejo
Gordillo and de Quejo were Spanish explorers who came to the New World in the early 1520s.
- Parris Island-Early Explorations
Discover how Parris Island became the place of a power struggle between Spain, France, and England.
- Dress Me Up
Help the colonist from 1628 get dressed in appropriate clothing.
- Everyday Life in Colonial America
Find out more about how the elite, middle class, working class, and slaves lived before the American Revolution.
- Letter from Henry Woodward to Sir John Yeamans, 1670
Read this letter from 1670 where Carolina is describes as a “second Paradize.” How is this letter written differently from a letter you might write today?
- What is Gullah?
Learn more about the Gullah culture and language that flourished along the coast by slaves from Africa.
- Slavery Timeline
Find out about African slavery in America from the earliest slaves sold in Virginia in 1619 to free blacks that fight in the Revolutionary War.
People of the Colonial Era
- Eliza Lucas Pinckney
Eliza Lucas Pinckney is best known for her experiments with creating blue die from indigo plants.
- Lord Proprietors
Can you name all eight of the original Lord Proprietors?
- Matthew Singleton
Matthew Singleton traveled from Virginia to South Carolina and was responsible for settling present-day Sumter County.
- Queen Anne’s Revenge
Explore Blackbeard’s flagship, which underwater archaeologists have explored for artifacts and history of pirates in the Carolinas.
- South Carolina Pirates
Meet Blackbeard, Anne Bonny, Calico Jack, and other pirates that came to South Carolina’s ports.
- Stede Bonnet, Gentleman Pirate
Bonnet was a moderately wealthy landowner from Barbados who turned to a life of crime. He was brought to trial and hanged in Charleston in 1718.
Flooded rice fields at Middleton Place Plantation near Charleston, South Carolina. Rice has been grown in South Carolina since 1680. Image courtesy of flickr user Aquistbe.
- Map of Charleston, 1704
See what a map of eight blocks of Charleston looked like in 1704.
- Colonial Maps
Choose from a wide variety of maps that show what South Carolina looked like as a colony and where people lived.
- Degrees of Latitude: Mapping Colonial America
Learn more about how maps were made and used in Colonial America.